Photography Tutorials: What would You like to Learn?


There is some talk going around about doing a series of photography tutorials, based partially on the new Photography for the Web book.

Most of us have compact cameras already or have cell phone cameras, so this won’t be pro-photography stuff. More like general definitions and some basics about lighting and composition (which I’m still learning myself).

So that said, what is it do you guys want to know?

Is there something you’ve always wondered about your compact cam?

Is there something you’ve been trying to photo’ but never quite got right?

Throw them out there, and we’ll see what we can do.




I remember his photographs… they were published in LIFE magazine back in like the 70’s or something.

I made some very inappropriate shirts using some of his fetus images… to get those, I got a book of his at the library and went wild at the printer’s.

[FONT=“Georgia”]hmm… It has a lot to do with your personality I think.

For example, I know a professional fashion photographer who takes acclaimed photos of girls bent in all kinds of goofy, fashion poses. He got a job photographing furnature and couldn’t get a single shot to make the client happy.

And that’s on a “pro” level. More so those of us on a hobby level, shooting whatever we want, whenever we feel to.

I think it comes down to whatever you’re attracted to, and how you really feel about what you’re photographing will show through your photos. If you don’t really care to shoot the tyre tracks, and are just doing it because you’re convinced you should, then you won’t take the kind of loving care as someone who’s into that would.

So the best I can say is, keep experimenting with different, varying kinds of topics until you find what you’re into. When you find it, the images and ideas will just flow. It could be club snaps, it could be models. Maybe it’s portraits. Landscapes? Flowers? Food? Sports? Play around. You’ll find it.

One of the most interesting photographers I learnt about is a guy named Lennart Nilsson, who takes medical photographs.

And you’ll hear that and go, “huh? Medical photographs? How exciting can that possibly be?”

Well… Here they are!

The Human Body - Lennart Nilsson


I don’t know if this is something that can be taught, but I’d like to learn to have a good ‘eye’ for photography.

Friends take great shots of things I would never think of photographing (tyre tracks in the mud, for example) and I always seem to take pictures of stuff like sunsets or the cat (yawn). If I try to photograph something different I always end up thinking ‘Why did I photograph that? That isn’t interesting at all!’ :frowning:

That would be interesting too… how to get a picture when you can’t avoid to have a screen or window between the object that you want to photograph and your camera :slight_smile: = get rid of those annoying reflections

Filters. For those of us with ye olde fashioned film-using cameras : )

I once had a book of filters. The stuff you could do with them, no computers necessary, was rather awesome. Lots of neat effects; blurring for motion, half-blurs, colours, etc. Also avoiding polarisation. I have such a filter, but I don’t think I’m using it right because when taking photos of shop windows I still get reflections, which I’m trying to remove. Also water.

They say birds who eat from water can polarise light with their eyes, allowing them to see the fish in the water under the surface.

I was once introduced to a type of film whose name I’ve forgotten, but it was sensitive to heat or infrared light. It was expensive, had to be stored in the fridge and was great for taking portraits, making people look like they glow a bit : )

[FONT=“Georgia”]Nice ones! Keep 'em coming.


Interior photographs. I’m rubbish when I try to do a picture of a chair or table inside the house… it doesn’t matter what kind of light I use :slight_smile:

The ability to focus on something and have everything else very much out of focus (blurred). Whether it’s very close (like the winning insect photo) or not so close (e.g. a tree on the horizon).

I’d be interested in learning how to do extreme close ups. eg. the contest’s “insect” mission. I’ve tried a few times, maybe it’s a limitation of my camera, maybe it’s my lack of a tripod, (probably both).

Even if I can never get a “perfect” shot, I’d like to know what I should do to get the best I can with what I have.

Hey Shaun,

For me, I’d like to see a tutorial on Motion Blur - i.e. taking a still photograph with a motion blur element within the photograph - it’s hard to get completely right but would love to see what advice you guys can offer :tup:


How about one on the rule of thirds? I know there is the composition article, but I’d like a more practical exercise type of discussion, or it could turn into a cropping exercise (how to turn a decent shot into something memorable).

My initial idea would be to take a random “snapshot” type of photo and either

[*]pick various items out of it, then crop the image in different ways to make them the focus

[*]take other photos of the same shot with the various items placed in the appropriate third to make them the focus of the image.
[/LIST]I know I’ve got a bunch of images from my trip to Alaska. A number turned out well, but I think there are some that would be great shots with some creative cropping.

[FONT=“Georgia”]Alright, guys.

Thread 01 is posted; Photography Principles - 01 Introduction

More to come soon, one a week if possible.

I’ll get to everything you guys mentioned in this thread by the time I’m done.


Shaun :tup: Brilliant work!

Will they be posted every Sunday?

Thanks so much for this, that’s some really useful advice. Going to take my camera out this weekend and go with my instincts. :slight_smile: